Read This First

Every generation of Christians faces the very same challenge: To learn the Bible for themselves and to teach it to those who follow in their footsteps. This task cannot be willed, it cannot be inherited, it cannot be passed down. Rather, each generation must accept afresh the challenge to honor, to know, and to obey the Word of God. Gary Millar’s Read This First is, according to the subtitle, “A Simple Guide to Getting the Most from the Bible.” It …

The Way I’ll Be Reading the Bible in 2022

Speaking broadly, there are two approaches to daily Bible-reading: reading for intimacy or reading for familiarity. Intimacy with the Bible comes by slow, meditative reading that focuses on small portions—deep study of books, chapters, and verses. Familiarity with the Bible comes through faster reading of larger portions—the entire sweep of the biblical narrative. Both are perfectly good approaches to the Bible and Christians thrive on a healthy mixture of the two. There is great benefit in knowing the Bible as …

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The Beauty of an Heirloom Bible

I once sat at George Müller’s desk and read James 1:27 from his Bible. I once visited a library that contained artifacts from William Carey’s life and leafed through a Bible that he had owned and studied. I have pondered the color-coded notes in Amy Carmichael’s Bible and have paged through a first-edition King James. Closer to home, my father’s Bible was placed at the front and center of the church during his funeral and I had a special wooden …

A Mother’s Bible

Few things thrill me more than unearthing treasures that, for too long, have lay hidden in old books. Just such a treasure is Bishop Gilbert Haven’s sweet reflection on his mother’s Bible–a fitting piece to share on this Mother’s Day. I hope you’ll read it and be blessed by it. On one of the shelves in my library, surrounded by volumes of all kinds, on various subjects, and in various languages, stands an old book, in its plain covering of …

Thy Word Is Not a MagLite

I always felt safer in the dark when carrying a MagLite. There was something about its size, about its heft, about its sheer brightness that made me feel better, that made me feel safer, when I would walk through the lonely woods at night. The MagLite was the flashlight of brave police officers, of well-trained soldiers, of courageous first responders, so surely it ought to be the flashlight of a terrified young boy who had to make his way from …

What Makes a Really Good Study Bible?

Many Christians can attest that of all the resources that have deepened their understanding of God’s Word, few have proven more important than a really good study Bible. A study Bible combines the text of Scripture with notes that help with both interpretation and application. Of course we acknowledge that there is a distinction between the words of Scripture and any other words that appear with them. Justin Taylor is correct when he says, “The most important feature in a …

A Mid-Year Bible-Reading Checkup (Don’t Give Up!)

Six months ago many of us were excited to kick off the year with a new Bible-reading plan. We had the plan printed out and the Bible laid open and the time set aside. We began with a lot of discipline and enthusiasm. But along the way, life happened. We missed a day here and there, then missed a week, then realized we had fallen far behind. Now, halfway through the year, many of us have given up and are …

The Right Response to the Old Testament Law

The greater our distance from another culture, the stranger that culture seems. This may be true geographically, but we observe it most commonly when the distance is chronological. The laws and customs of ancient civilizations often strike us as bizarre or unfair. There’s no doubt that sometimes they were. But if we assume that people then, just like people now, were rational beings, we can at least suppose that each law and each custom was arrived at deliberately and was …

Never Read a Bible Verse (and Never Listen To a Sermon Clip)

Greg Koukl often passes along a cheeky little tip related to reading and understanding the Bible. “If there was one bit of wisdom, one rule of thumb, one single skill I could impart, one useful tip I could leave that would serve you well the rest of your life, what would it be? What is the single most important practical skill I’ve ever learned as a Christian? Here it is: Never read a Bible verse.” Hang on! Is he one …

Help! I’ve Fallen Behind On My Bible Readings!

It is surprisingly difficult to turn a good intention into a life-long discipline. That isn’t to say it can’t be done. But it will be hard, there will be setbacks, and it will take both backbone and resilience. Now is probably a good time to remind you of that. If you are like many Christian people, you made a commitment this year to read through your Bible. Good for you! That commitment is worth celebrating! Wanting to do a good …